FN Editorial: Duality: School pride is great, but a publicity campaign shouldn’t trump Black History Month

This February marks the second annual I Love UD campaign.

It’s also, Black History Month.

That’s right. It seems that once again the university’s February fund drive takes priority over a celebration of the contributions of black Americans observed across the nation.

I Love UD is itself not a bad idea, and it’s actually much better this year than its inaugural season was. While there are still some elements that feel forced and contradictory, like the “Be UD Kind” project, which asks community members to leave promotional materials for the school after performing random acts of kindness, overall the campaign feels more genuine than the one we wrote about last year in a staff editorial titled “Contrived.”

Some true highlights include the “Fund-A-Flyer” program, which aims to facilitate fundraising for student groups and campus projects, and the push for the “I Love UD Scholarship.”

The problem is, the university is once again promoting a campaign that comes off as inorganic and occasionally self-indulgent over a cultural event that more closely aligns with UD’s community and social justice message. On the website, any mention of Black History Month is coupled with a link away from the campaign, as if to say “go someplace else.”

If UD truly wanted to celebrate its love for its community, it could spend February celebrating the contributions of black students and alumni throughout the school’s history, or even better, shine a spotlight on the efforts of people from a variety of cultures who have made the university what it is today. The least the university could do is choose a different month to celebrate itself.

Flyer News: Univ. of Dayton's Student Newspaper